A KEA statement following the violent police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha:
We wake this morning with heavy hearts and restless minds, replaying the tragic and violent event that disrupted our Kenosha community yesterday afternoon. Jacob Blake, the dedicated father of two EBSOLA Creative Arts students, was shot by Kenosha Police with his children in the car watching, undoubtedly traumatized by what they witnessed. Miraculously, Jake is now in stable condition, but the pain, anger, and fear that his family and other members of our community feel cannot be erased.
As educators, we are now left grappling with what we can do and say to ease the heartache of our families, students, teachers, and community members who have been impacted by this situation. While it is important to indicate our support with words, we must also put those words into action and stand with Jake and his family as they demand answers and fight for justice. We must ensure that our students and their families are not forced to live in fear. We must ensure that our schools and communities are given the tools and space to heal. We must ensure that our students’ emotional needs are prioritized as they process these difficult times. KEA is committed to advocating for the schools our precious children deserve and a public education that is anti-racist, restorative, and honors their lived experiences. We demand that Kenosha be a community where our Black and Brown students will be safe. It must be a place where Black lives matter and are valued and protected by the institutions that exist to serve our Kenosha community.
Enough is enough. The time for change is now.
If you are ready to take action, the Kenosha Unified School District will be presenting on equity in our schools at the regular school board meeting tomorrow night, Tuesday, August 25 at 7:00p.m. We encourage our members and community to demand immediate and ongoing action toward the anti-racist schools our students deserve and that we prioritize the safety of our Black and Brown students and their families who have been disproportionately impacted by Covid.
If you are a KEA member looking for resources on how to become more culturally aware or would like to join our Racial Justice in Education Committee, please email us at email@example.com. If you are a community member looking to support our efforts, please consider signing up to become a Community Ally here: https://bit.ly/CommunityAlly.